Covenant Christian School is pleased to announce that the 2017-2018 Teacher of the Year is Heather Bennett. Mrs. Bennett earned a Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education from Florida Atlantic University and taught at two Christian schools prior to arriving at CCS in the fall of 2011. She is the director of our VPK program, and she made a dramatic, faith-filled leap to teach 5th and 6th grade and also serve as the 6th grade homeroom teacher when Nancy Bowen stepped down in October to care for her ailing father.
That act alone should give people a clue as to what type of person Heather is. She is thoughtful, caring, and is “all in” with any activity at Covenant. She is an avid supporter of our fine arts program, and she recently accompanied our students to the most recent drama competition. Whether it is helping students understand a new concept, assisting 6th graders with getting gear organized in their lockers, or listening to a group of girls share their struggles with life, Heather is available.
One of the strengths Heather demonstrates is a clear focus on what students are saying, She takes time to listen to her students, tries to determine ways to help a student understand complicated concepts, and exercises patience when her 5th and 6th grade student act like – well, when they act like 5th and 6th grade students! Her demeanor is calm, assured, and confident, an island of calm in the midst of almost 50 students who pass through her classroom every day to learn about science, history, and Bible. She makes learning a fun adventure, often dangling a surprise project before her students to generate enthusiasm and interest in a lesson. Heather makes coming to class an adventure in expectancy, with students always eager to know what learning “treat” she has hidden from them until just the right moment.
Mrs. Bennett has been blessed with many talents which she shares freely with her students and co-workers. She has been seen lying on the floor comforting a scared preschooler, praying with a student in the hallway, sorting out hundreds of papers as she prepared for another VPK report, and assisting the choir or drama teachers with major fine arts events at school or in state competitions.
She is always seeking ways to help other teachers, administrators, and parents whenever possible. God is at the center of everything she does, as evidenced in the way she models servant-leadership. Her favorite verse, Philippians 4:4-6, captures how Heather looks at life: “Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.”
Our prayer at Covenant Christian School is that we will continue to be blessed for many more years by the passion and love of Heather Bennett, our 2017-2018 teacher of the Year.